INTRODUCTION: Management of central nervous system (CNS) metastases in patients with driver-mutated non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has traditionally incorporated both tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) and intracranial radiation. Whether next-generation, CNS-penetrant TKIs can be used alone without upfront radiation, however, remains unknown. This multi-institutional retrospective analysis aimed to compare outcomes in patients with EGFR- or ALK-positive NSCLC who received CNS-penetrant TKI therapy alone versus in combination with radiation for new or progressing intracranial metastases.METHODS: Data was retrospectively collected from 3 academic institutions. Two treatment groups (CNS-penetrant TKI alone vs TKI+CNS RT) were compared for both EGFR- and ALK-positive cohorts. Outcome variables included time to progression, time to intracranial progression, and time to treatment failure, measured from the date of initiation of CNS-penetrant TKI therapy.RESULTS: A total of 147 patients were included (EGFR n=94, ALK n=52, both n=1). In patients receiving radiation, larger metastases, neurological symptoms, and receipt of steroids were more common. There were no significant differences between TKI vs CNS RT+TKI groups for any of the study outcomes, including time to progression (8.5 vs 6.9 months, p=0.13 [EFGR] and 11.4 vs 13.4 months, p=0.98 [ALK]), time to intracranial progression (14.8 vs 20.5 months, p=0.51 [EGFR] and 18.1 vs 21.8 months, p=0.65 [ALK]), or time to treatment failure (13.8 vs 8.6 months, p=0.26 [EGFR] and 13.5 vs 23.2 months, p=0.95 [ALK]).CONCLUSION: These results provide preliminary evidence that intracranial activity of CNS-penetrant TKIs may enable local radiation to be deferred in appropriately selected patients without negatively impacting progression.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jtho.2021.08.009
View details for PubMedID 34455066